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Bald cypress

Taxodium distichum

Common Bald Cypress looks like an evergreen but is really deciduous as it drops its leaves in the fall. It is referred to as a deciduous conifer. The growth habit is narrow while young and then broadens out as the plant ages. Common Bald Cypress is intolerant of shade when young, but can be used near water.

Bald cypress has needles, but in the fall those needles turn orange-brown and then fall off. It is a stately tree tolerating many conditions including clay and wet soils. In wet soil conditions, the bald cypress will form sections of root growing above ground to gather oxygen. These knobby knees as they are called can occur 10' to 15' beyond the spread of the plant. Plant the tree in a well-drained soil and you won't have to worry about knobby knee problems.

Bald cypress trees grow best when they have their own space. Bald cypress require sun (at least 1/2 day). They make a great screen when planted in groups and can be planted within 15' of a house.

The plant grows quickly, up to 2' per year, and produces great fall color in northern climates.

The bald cypress will develop small 1" purple pine cones around mid July and then turn brown in the fall.

Most bald cypress trees are grown in containers and can be planted any time during the growing season (early spring - late fall). If you find a balled and burlap model, make sure it was dug in late winter and get a 1 year guarantee before purchasing.


Specimen trees ideal for the American Landscape